Free games to pass the time if you’re staying inside

As millions of people worldwide stay inside and away from others, in an effort to “flatten the curve” of new cases of COVID-19, several online entertainment services and portals have made content free to users to help them enjoy life indoors for a while.

Twenty-seven free games are available on GOG.com right now. Many are from the 1990s and the turn of the century (one is even from 1979), but chances are good you’ve heard of some of these, if not played them already. They include Shadow Warrior Classic Complete, point-and-click adventure game Teenagent, and three Ultima games.

More current titles include Builders of Egypt: Prologue, a historical city-builder set in the ancient Nile valley. There’s also Gwent: The Witcher Card Game, but that was already a free-to-play game; the link carries users to the mobile version’s download page.

On Wednesday, Valve opened Game Festival 2020 on Steam to showcase games from independent developers who would have attended the 2020 Game Developers Conference, which was canceled at the end of February. Free demos are being offered for several dozen new PC games.

Indie developers on Itch.io have likewise put 60 games on deep discount, with some marked down 100% — aka “free.” That includes Vlambeer’s Nuclear Throne. Elsewhere, the iconic keyboard synthesizer makers Moog and Korg have made their mobile synth apps free. Zoom, the teleconferencing application, is also making its services free to students and teachers in grades K-12, in light of school districts closing nationwide to help contain the spread.

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